Luxembourg Royal Wedding Look-Back: Henri and Maria Teresa
Welcome to part three of our ‘Luxembourg Royal Wedding Look-Back’ series. Parts one and two looked at the weddings of Charlotte and Felix and Jean and Josephine-Charlotte. This edition takes you to the 1981 marriage of Friday’s groom, His Royal Highness The Hereditary Grand Duke and Ms Maria Teresa Mestre y Batista.
Hereditary Grand Duke Henri announced his engagement to Maria Teresa Mestre y Batista on November 10th, 1980. The couple, aged 25 and 24 respectively, had met while studying at the University of Geneva, where they both studied political science. They were married in a civil ceremony at the Grand Ducal Palace in Luxembourg City on February 4th, which was attended only by their immediate families. Valentine’s Day 1981 was the date set for the religious ceremony, taking place at the Cathédrale Notre Dame.
The bride was escorted down the aisle of the Cathédrale by her father, José Antonio Mestre y Álvarez, for the hour-long Roman Catholic religious ceremony, and was supported by her sister, Catalina, as bridesmaid. She wore a wedding gown designed by Parisian Pierre Balmain, which was made of white silk and featured standing pleat tucks throughout the course of the design, with fur trim around the hems. Maria Teresa was lent the Congo Diamond Tiara belonging to her future mother-in-law, Grand Duchess Joséphine-Charlotte. The tiara was originally a wedding gift to the-then Princess of Belgium from the then-Belgian colony of the Congo, and was worn at her own wedding.
After the ceremony, Henri and Maria Teresa exited the cathedral under a military guard, and headed to the Grand Ducal Palace for a balcony appearance. They were joined by the groom’s parents and siblings for a short time before heading inside for their reception. Among the crowned and formerly crowned guests who attended the religious ceremony were the Belgian Royal Family, Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik of Denmark, King Olav V of Norway, the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Rainier III and Princess Grace of Monaco, Princess Margriet of the Netherlands and Professor Pieter van Vollenhoven, Archduke Otto and Archduchess Regina of Austria and Queen Marie-José of Italy.
Henri became the Grand Duke of Luxembourg in 2000, when his father Jean abdicated. He and Maria Teresa have five children: Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume, Prince Félix, Prince Louis, Princess Alexandra and Prince Sebastien.Filed under Luxembourg Royals
Tagged Grand Duchess Maria Teresa, Grand Duke Henri, Wedding.